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Mental Health & Well-Being Task Force: Addendum and Faculty and Staff Findings

DEPARTMENT(S): 
March 14, 2022

This message was sent to the WPI community.

We are writing to share two additional reports from the Mental Health & Well-Being Task Force, as promised shortly before break. 

An important addendum to the Initial Findings and Recommendations of the Mental Health & Well-Being Task Force, Phase One: Students is now available. This addendum provides additional feedback from underrepresented groups on campus following focused listening sessions the Task Force conducted with Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC); African American, Latino/a American, Asian American, Native American (ALANA); Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, Queer, Intersex, Asexual, Aromantic, Agender, and Pansexual (LGBTQIAP+); international, and neurodiverse student populations. These listening sessions provided critical inputs on the unique experiences and challenges that these students face on campus

We are also sharing the Findings and Recommendations of the Mental Health & Well-Being Task Force, Phase Two: Faculty and Staff. As with the student-focused first report, this report details the major themes and findings related to the needs of our faculty and staff, which emerged from the data gathered through the mental health survey (in which 23 percent of faculty and 27 percent of staff participated), town hall sessions, and other platforms this past fall. 

While the Task Force work has concluded, the work of the Mental Health Implementation Team (MHIT) has just begun. The MHIT has identified initial priorities from the MHWBTF’s Phase One report for implementation and established teams that are currently focused on a specific set of actions within these priorities. MHIT will review the addendum to the Phase One report, as well as the Phase Two report to identify additional priorities for the initial phase of implementation. Recommendations will be reviewed and prioritized on a rolling basis as the MHIT completes tasks. Watch for updates and check the Be Well Together page often. 

These last six months have reminded us that the WPI community is made up of thoughtful and caring students, faculty, staff, parents, families, and alumni who support wellness and success for one everyone here. We are confident the recommendations brought forth will help us all reconnect and will have a significant, positive, and lasting impact on our community. We want to especially thank the members of the Task Force who dedicated a great deal of time and effort to help us begin to move forward together.

If you have additional thoughts to share, please email us at bewelltogether@wpi.edu

Best wishes for a healthy and fulfilling D-Term and second half of the spring semester.

WPI Mental Health & Well-Being Task Force Co-Chairs

Jean King, Peterson Family Dean of Arts & Sciences
Matthew Barry, Assistant Director, Student Development & Counseling Center